The Country Wife 1981

Tour Information

The Country Wife was performed for the first time in 1674/75. An instant success with the aristocratic audience for whom it was written, it is now generally considered the first, indeed one of the few, masterpieces of English Restoration Comedy.

The new comedy satirised the new morality; sexual liaisons on the either side of the matrimonial blanket were treated with a lack of sentimentality which alarmed future generations. The Country Wife was never played in its unexpurgated form until 1924.


Cheek by Jowl’s first production: William Wycherley’s The Country Wife, presented at the Edinburgh Festival in 1981 and supported by a small Arts Council grant. The first performance of The Country Wife was on 17th August 1981 at St Columba’s by the Castle, Edinburgh.

Venue City Country Date No. of Performances
St Columba by the Castle Edinburgh UK 17/08/81 12
Theatrespace London UK 25/08/81 12
Theatre Uppingham Rutland UK 02/10/81 2
West End Centre Aldershot UK 09/10/81 1
Pegasus Theatre Oxford UK 14/10/81 1
The Theatre Chipping Norton UK 16/10/81 2
RNCB Hereford UK 19/10/81 1
Ellesmere College Ellesmere UK 20/10/81 1
College of FE Kidderminster UK 21/10/81 1
Borough Council Dudley UK 22/10/81 1
Macready Theatre Rugby UK 23/10/81 1
Headlands Market Drayton UK 24/10/81 1
Rosehill Theatre Whitehaven UK 30/10/81 2
Crawford Arts Centre St Andrews UK 05/11/81 3
Bonar Hall Dundee UK 10/11/81 2
MacRobert Centre Stirling UK 12/11/81 2
Biggar Arts Workshop Biggar UK 14/11/81 1
Surrey University Guildford UK 17/11/81 1
Slaithwaite Hall Huddersfield UK 20/11/81 1
Downside Abbey Stratton on Fosse UK 21/11/81 1
Nelson and Colne College Nelson UK 24/11/81 1
Grange Arts Centre Oldham UK 26/11/81 1
Capitol Theatre Horsham UK 27/11/81 2
Midlands Arts Centre Birmingham UK 30/11/81 1
Old Fire Station Oxford  UK 02/12/81 2
Arts Centre Plymouth UK 04/12/81 2


Kevin BurkeHorner
Michael IrwinHarcourt/Mistress Squeamish
Nigel LeachSparkish
Simon NeedsPinchwife
Jane MaudAlithea/Lady Fidgit
Caroline SwiftMargery/Sir Jasper Fidgit

DirectorDeclan Donnellan
DesignerNick Ormerod
Stage ManagerCaroline Donnellan

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